Thursday, September 22, 2005

I remember sleep

Sleep: I remember that thing.

I've never done so much physical and mental work on so little sleep in my life. Oh sure, there were a few all-nighters in college but I could usually sleep for days after those exams. In the academy, there is no let-up. It's up for work at 0300 (that's 3:00 a.m. for you civilians) for a day of running (300 meter sprint followed by the 1.5 mile, pushups, situps, vertical jumps, short obstacle course. I did pretty well on the physical tests (not the best but I'm up against 20 year olds). Next, a parade march to flag raising followed by 45 minutes of dress inspection. 45 minutes of standing completely still as the sun cooks my black boots and sizzles my scalp. I am proud to admit that I'm the only recruit with two perfect inspections (any violations are met with essays, memos, or physical punishment.) The next 5 hours was spent in the classroom learning constitutional law. We are lucky to get 15 minutes for lunch each day and are now required to keep our 'gun hand' free at all times. This means carrying a backpack, garment bag, and large duffel without using my right hand. All this while running (we're not allowed to walk at all while on academy grounds). There are so many rules and regulations that it makes the head spin: no walking on gravel, access to only certain sidewalks, properly addressing other as 'staff', 'sir', 'class', etc.
The pressure to be perfect is intense and the stress levels are running high. Our class is determined to succeed no matter how hard it gets. The first few weeks are the hardest so I'm almost half way through the most difficult part.
Tomorrow is 'fight for your life' exercise (boxing classmates for a full minute while on our knees after sprinting up stairs and doing pushups to exhaustion).
We saw a video of a rookie officer getting killed during a routine traffic stop. The officer had plenty of time to shoot while he watched the suspect load his rifle but did not have the nerve to fire first. This cost him his life and caused some concern in our classroom.
Well, it's off to bed now as sleep is now a cherished luxury.


At September 23, 2005 4:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


This all sounds very exciting. I know your family is very proud of you. Kudos to you for taking the next step to a new future.
Wishing you great success.
Kim, Fernando and boys

At September 24, 2005 7:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where is the Friday's update ? Joking, I was 21 and single when I did a similar career change. Advise, be the guy at graduation who is awarded officer(soldier) of the rotation and dudes in your own squad have no idea who you are. And 2 out of 3 DIs are "who ?" Keep up your efforts. We are here if you need help.

At September 24, 2005 3:31 PM, Anonymous Gamma said...

Gary, as your Mother it pains me to read all these bad things they're making you do....just kidding, I know the stuff you're made of. Keep up the good work. Love Ya.

At September 25, 2005 12:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mind over matter. If you do not mind nothing matters.

At September 26, 2005 11:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm proud of you and really impressed with your stamina. Keep it up!

-Tony B

At September 26, 2005 1:57 PM, Anonymous Ronda said...

Man, and I thought being on "Survivor" would be tough...


Post a Comment

<< Home